Johannesburg, South Africa 05 December 2017 -- Sappi Limited, a leading global producer of dissolving wood pulp, speciality and packaging papers, graphic (printing and writing) paper and biomaterials, today announced that it had signed an agreement to acquire the speciality paper business of Cham Paper Group Holding AG (CPG) for CHF146.5 million (approximately $149 million).
The transaction includes the acquisition of CPG's Carmignano and Condino Mills in Italy, its digital imaging business located in Cham, Switzerland as well as all brands and know-how. It will be funded through internal cash resources. The transaction is conditional on the approval from certain competition authorities. We expect the acquisition to be completed during the first calendar quarter of 2018.
The main benefits of the acquisition include:
- Supports Sappi's diversification strategy and 2020vision to grow in higher margin growth segments
- Strengthens Sappi Europe's speciality and packaging papers footprint and skills; adds 160,000 tons of speciality paper to our capacity
- Increases Sappi's relevance in speciality papers, opening up new customers and markets to Sappi's existing products and generating economies of scale and synergies
- Gaining greater share-of-wallet with valued brand owners; accelerating innovation and new product development
- Improved near-term profitability and serve as platform for organic growth and further acquisitions. Will add €183 million of sales and approximately €20 million of EBITDA before taking into account synergies
- Builds on the investments currently underway to increase speciality paper capacity at our Somerset, Maastricht and Alfeld Mills
- Unlocks the growth potential of the CPG speciality paper business
Commenting on the transaction Steve Binnie, Chief Executive Officer of Sappi Limited, said:
"This acquisition further strengthens Sappi's speciality paper business both in Europe and globally by combining Cham's strong brands and assets with Sappi's global reach. This transaction will increase profitability and unlock the significant growth and innovation potential inherent within the speciality paper market. I am very pleased that we have taken another signification step towards realizing our Vision2020 goal."
Berry Wiersum, CEO Sappi Europe stated:
"We are very excited about the possibilities this transaction opens up for Sappi as well as for Cham's highly respected business. The products and brands which have been acquired are an excellent complement to our market offering, enabling us to offer our existing, as well as new customers in Europe, North America and globally, a broader range of products coupled with excellent customer service."
The speciality paper business of CPG will continue to operate separately and independently from Sappi until clearances from the authorities are obtained.
About Sappi Limited
A global leader in dissolving wood pulp and paper-based solutions, Sappi Limited (listed and in the Top 40 on the JSE - SAP), is headquartered in Johannesburg, South Africa; has over 12,000 employees; manufacturing facilities on three continents, in seven countries (eight operations in Europe, three operations in America and five operations in South Africa) and customers in over 150 countries worldwide
Sappi works closely with customers to provide relevant and sustainable dissolving wood pulp, paper (speciality, packaging and graphic), paper pulp, and biomaterial products and related services and innovations. Our market-leading range of paper products includes: flexible packaging, label, release liner, containerboard and fluting, coated fine papers, casting release papers and in our Southern African region newsprint, uncoated graphic and business papers. These products serve the fashion, FMCG and industrial sectors. Our dissolving wood pulp products are used worldwide by converters to produce viscose fibre, pharmaceutical products as well as a wide range of household and consumer products.
We continue to grow into a profitable and cash-generative diversified business with an exciting future in woodfibre, a renewable resource.
About Cham Paper Group Holding AG (CPG): CPGN (SWX) The Cham Paper Group Holding AG is a leading manufacturer of coated speciality papers. The company was founded in 1657. Following the divestment of the paper business, the company will focus on its real estate business and will operate under the name «Cham Group».
Carmignano Mill (Carmignano di Brenta, Padua, Italy): This is a non-integrated paper mill with two paper machines. The plant can produce 100 000 tons of paper and employs 210 people. Paper grades include C1S FlexPack, C1S Label Papers, Wet Glue and Self-Adhesive applications, base paper for metallisation
Condino Mill (Borgo Chiese, Trento, Italy): This is a non-integrated paper mill, with one paper machine. The mill employs 120 employees and can produce 60 000 tons of paper per year. Paper grades include glassine (silicone base paper) and super calendared, uncoated flexible packaging papers.
Digital Imaging Business (Cham, Canton Zug, Switzerland): A finishing plant is located in Cham Switzerland, in a 4000sqm industrial warehouse where the base paper from Condino or Carmignano mills are converted to produce 12 000 tons of digital imaging paper. The business employs 50 people.